Wow… Somewhat unexpected but not completely. Kevin Harvick won at Richmond.

Kyle Larson had the pole in the Federated Auto Parts 400 and finished 14th. Harvick started 13th and crossed the checkers with the win so it was almost a spot trade. It’s OK as Larson is still ranked a few spots above Harvick even though Larson has one win against Harvick’s two…

It is NASCAR points math… Just run with it and don’t be confused…

Ross Chastain was the stage 1 winner. Joey Logano took stage 2 and also led the race for the high count of 222 laps.

We also have to take a late season look at Harvick… There could be any combination of reasons that kept Harvick out of Victory Lane for so long. The “new” NextGen car, team and crew issues, experience tempered with age… What can’t be overlooked, however, is that Kevin is a Cup Champion that has a history in this sport that bridges the past and future. It was Harvick who drove the Earnhardt car with #29 in 2001…

However, one week before Richmond, Harvick broke a 65 race winless streak at Michigan. Now he has two wins back to back with the 60th Cup win just now at Richmond…

Has something clicked…? Has this new car come into the grips of Harvick just in time to make a real run in 2022…? Was 2021 on cruise control…? Did Stewart-Haas change the coffee in the shop…?

Harvick’s Crew Chief, Rodney Childers, believes the team and all involved have been steadily taking the new car forward for the past few months and it is coming together with results.

Whatever, the reason… Luck, skill or collaboration… The #4 team have two wins and, no matter who wins or loses before the playoff cutooff, that puts Harvick in the post-season Championship run.

NASCAR moves on to the two final races in the regular season. Watkins Glen and Daytona give the final chances to “win in” to the playoffs. Ryan Blaney is currently in the mix without a season win so far. If another driver wins that hasn’t already Blaney’s points move to the back burner.

Darlington is the first race in the playoffs. Martinsville is the last elimination before the “Championship 4” go for it at Phoenix.

Full PHOTO GALLERY – Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway

The Camping World Series is already in their playoff season with Grant Enfinger taking the first playoff win at Indy on July 29. (NASCAR Cup has a couple more to go)

Richmond notched a 3rd season win for Chandler Smith and put him in the mix with Enfinger to move to the next round. Three time series champ Matt Crafton is in a must win position going to Kansas in September.

Ty Majeski had the pole and the 1st stage. Chandler took stage 2 and the race win. The top 4 drivers across the line at Richmond, Chandler Smith, John H. Nemechek, Ty Majeski and Grant Enfinger are all chasing playoff points.

Full Photo Gallery – Worldwide Express 250 for Carrier Appreciation at Richmond Raceway

National racing attention is on the doorstep of Virginia. NASCAR and IMSA are this month (August).

NASCAR is first and just a week away at Richmond Raceway. The “regular season” of NASCAR Cup racing is getting into “last chance” time. Four races remain, including today at Michigan.

For Virginia fans, Richmond is next. The Federated Auto Parts 400 weekend also hosts the Camping World Trucks, which is already into their “playoff” season. The Worldwide Express 250 for Carrier Appreciation is the second race of the Trucks championship run. It is a Saturday and Sunday of action on track with start times set in the afternoon.

Race week at Richmond includes the chance to drive on track for charity benefiting Special Olympics of Virginia. The Pixar movie “CARS” will be shown, a concerts are set with Cody Christian Duo, Cody Johnson and more. Local music, Kids Zones, autograph sessions and midway plaza shows are also filling out fan activities around the track.

Racing will be tight at Richmond. There are some hot drivers still chasing a win to make the Cup playoffs. For the Trucks, the championship is already on the line with this race forward.

A few weeks later another big series comes to race in Virginia. The IMSA-WeatherTech series will take over Southside at Virginia International Raceway. The showcase Michelin Gt Challenge shares the weekend with the Michelin Pilot Challenge, Prototype Challenge, Lamborghini Super Trofeo and Mazda MX-5 Cup. It is a full schedule of sports car racing!

The weekend also hosts Car Corrals for fans’ parking, a driver-fan discussion forum, music with American Idol performer, Dan Marshall, race day appearance with Miss Virginia and full display area with activities for kids.

Active Military are in for free and Veterans receive 50% off tickets (Government issued ID at gate).

These big series are always a show. However, let’s not forget the weekly racing all over Virginia also putting on great racing and family entertainment. The variety of racing in Virginia is what makes it great for racing Lovers!

We’re stepping quickly into July. Virginia has been hosting big events like SRX at South Boston in June and NHRA at Virginia Motorsports Park in May. The first two legs of the Virginia Late Model Triple Crown roll in July, one already at South Boston and the second coming to Langley.

For August, Richmond hosts NASCAR Cup and Virginia International Raceway hosts IMSA WeatherTech. VIR has been busy with events like HyperFest and a good prelude to IMSA, the FANATEC GT World Challenge. Richmond Raceway is busy with non-racing community and culture events. However, when racing is on the calendar, Richmond is all in with the business of speed.

For NASCAR and IMSA, the racing this season has been wide open. The “new” NASCAR Cup car is making itself known to the teams, drivers and fans. The variety and speed of IMSA continues to draw and the racing has been challenging across the divisions.

As we approach August and Virginia racing, it seems the number 9 may be coming in fast…

Race winners are shown across the board for manufacturers with 13 winners and, among those, 5 are repeat winners, including Chase Elliott in the Hendrick #9 Chevrolet. Elliott currently has a points lead and Hendrick Motorsports as a team has logged wins with all four drivers (Elliott, Byron, Larson, Bowman).

Chase Elliott (#9 NAPA Chevy) leading in NASCAR Cup points (July 2022)

For IMSA, the #9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3R has been making big waves in the GTD Pro class. Drivers Mathieu Jaminet and Matt Campbell have multiple wins and the plaid Porsche team are keeping the pressure on.

Number 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche (Jaminet / Campbell) leading in IMSA GTD Pro (July 2022)

There is plenty of racing before August 13-14 and NASCAR Cup at Richmond Raceway and August 26-28 and IMSA/WeatherTech at Virginia International Raceway. It will be interesting to follow those Number 9 cars and drivers on their way here.

It was a weekend for Toyota at Richmond Raceway. The NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series in April have carried the Toyota sponsorship for quite a while. The ToyotaCare 250 already notched the manufacturer with an Xfinity win Saturday as Ty Gibbs grabbed the checkered flag.

The NASCAR Cup Toyota Owners 400 doubled down as Denny Hamlin drove the #11 FedEx Toyota to a Sunday win.

It did not look so obvious at the start. Ryan Blaney in the #12 Penske Ford and William Byron in the Liberty #12 Chevy started out on row 1 with the drop of the green. Blaney held the lead for the stage one win with Byron right there for second.

Blaney started stage two out front but Martin Truex, Jr took over following green flag pit stops. Truex and Christopher Bell traded off but the stage 2 win went to Truex with Bell claiming second. The #19 and #20 of Truex and Bell put Toyota in the spotlight at the stage 2 half way point.

The restart for the final stage put the #19 and the #20 back into running order. A caution brought on by a triple car shot as Cole Custer and Ty Dillon touched which pushed into Austin Cindric. William Byron stays out as others pit for position on the lead at the restart.

Martin Truex, Jr was chasing on the #24 of Byron. As laps ticked by, Truex stayed on the #24 but Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick and Denny Hamlin were making gains. Hamlin was running fresher tires than the rest and made better time.

At five laps to go Hamlin went by Truex and took the inside of the #24. Harvick also drove the advantage of the high side #24 and followed the #11 by. Hamlin and Harvick ran one and two for the checkers.

Denny Hamlin smoking the tires of the #11 FedEx Toyota following the win of the Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway

The racing doesn’t have too far to go for the next event. NASCAR Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Series all make their way to Martinsville for the next race weekend. Blue Emu / Call 811 weekend runs late in the day Thursday through Saturday to finish under the lights at the historic “paperclip”, celebrating 75 years of NASCAR at the track.

Full Photo Gallery of the Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway – April 3, 2022

Ty Gibbs is seems to be collecting early season wins in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Seven starts and three wins have put Gibbs in a spot of having a lead in playoff points but a second spot in the regular season standings. A.J. Allmendinger holds the lead in the season using the NASCAR math of a race win plus top 5, top 10 and stage wins. Despite the real series leading 3 wins for Gibbs, the #54 driver and #9 driver, Noah Gragson are tied 20 points off of Allmendinger.

For Richmond Raceway and the ToyotaCare 250, Ty Gibbs was driving hard for the win all day. He and team mate John Hunter Nemechek started one and two with Toyotas leading the field to the green flag. Nemechek took the stage 1 win. Gibbs was in front for stage 2. In the final laps, the #54 of Gibbs and the #18 of Nemechek were still racing for the lead. The #18 had gotten around the #54 with 3 laps to go after several exchanges over the final 50 laps. Gibbs was on the bumper of the #18 with a nudge here and tap there.

It came down to the final turn of the final lap as Ty Gibbs came into turn three underneath Nemechek and drove the #54 up into turn four forcing Nemechek onto the brakes or into the wall. The move put Gibbs out front on the front stretch for the win.

Post race, Gibbs knew there was trouble ahead. “I definitely deserve one back but we’re racing for wins” he said.

Nemechek, who is actually running full time in the Camping World Series, was noticeably put off by the last lap. “Him and I will settle it one day,” Nemechek said. “I don’t want to say too much and get myself in trouble…. Just got drove through… He didn’t even try and make the corner…”

Also noteable for the ToyotaCare 250 was a first time Xfinity starter, Rajah Caruth. The 19 year old African-American driver is an ARCA and Advance Auto Weekly Series driver racing with Alpha Prime Racing at Richmond. His first Xfinity start comes at a track he had visited as a child with his family. He finished 24th.

The Comcast Dash 4 Cash winner at Richmond (four drivers determined eligible after Circuit of the Americas) was Sam Mayer, driver of the #1 Accelerate Pros Talent Chevrolet. The eligible drivers at Martinsville will be Ty Gibbs, Sam Mayer, AJ Allmendinger and Riley Herbst.

The Top 5 finishers in the ToyotaCare 250

  1. Ty Gibbs
  2. John Hunter Nemechek
  3. Sam Mayer
  4. AJ Allmendinger
  5. Riley Herbst

PHOTOS from the ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond Raceway

A little luck and some lap traffic brought a come back win to Justin Bonsignore Friday evening at Richmond Raceway.

The Whelen Modified Tour ran at Richmond on April 1st, 2022 following the season opener at New Smyrna, Florida. A mechanical issue put Bonsignore off the race to finish last in Florida. The win at Richmond brought back some of the form for the three-time series champion.

Justin won the pole and ran well but it was Tommy Catalano that raised the pressure with a fast car and first position as the race came into the later laps. Slower traffic put Catalano off the pace which allowed Bonsignore to get back up and in position. Catalano spun slightly and with 10 to go, allowing Bonsignore to get by and lead to the finish.

Top Five at the Whelen Modified – Virginia is for Racing Lovers 150

  1. Justin Bonsignore
  2. Tommy Catalono
  3. Chuck Hossfeld
  4. Kyle Ebersole
  5. Tyler Rypkema